Homemade Incubator


In the Brooder
6 Years
Nov 24, 2013
So me and my mom have been buying the things we would be needing past few days. Today I decided to finally assemble it. Let me show my progress thus far:

We had extension cords and the lightbulb cords around the house already so we bought the rest.
$2 Plastic Box
$3 Lightbulbs 2 pack
$3 Thermometer with Humidity gauge
$12 Digital Thermometer with Humidity gauge
$1 Plastic foam type lining for the bottom
Total: $21+ whatever california tax is



Now I would suggest that if anyone goes this route to please put a spare piece of wood against the plastic as you drill a hole to it. We didn't and well my dad ended up breaking it. :(

Duct tape fixes anything

The duct tape made it into a snuggly hole for the lightbulb. So there was no need to tape the actual lightbulb to anything.



I also ran into the problem of the temperature stabilising at 86F. That simply won't do, I need it between 99 and 102 if my notes are right. So i put it inside a cut cardboard box I had lying around. I will be keeping track of temperature changes for the rest of today. I might need to add aluminum foil to the inside or stuff the gap between the cardboard box and the plastic box with newspaper. Will let ya know. :D Hopefully I get the temp right and I can meet the new chicks by the beginning of next month. YAY!

Totally crossing my fingers

I suppose this gives time for my mom and sis to pick out the eggs. :lol:
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Keep us updated on the results of your hatch:)
Very awesome I've tried to make my own but caved in and just bought 2 styrofoam incubator kits to hatch in.
Will do. It seems to fluctuate between 101 and 102 but will not go above 102. I put lots of newspaper between the plastic and the cardboard boxes.I also place in a low mug with small amount of water as it had 32% humidity and brought it up to 48 % (I read it as a 45% needed on one source and 50% needed on another. Family got excited and placed the eggs inside. Dear lord I hope it all goes well. On June 6th or 7th we will know :D I will check development one week from now.
Did you run it for a day before putting eggs in? If not just keep an eye on them so they don't die early
Do you have a egg turner? And how many eggs did you set ?
I usually get a 50-60% hatch rate but that's with buying the eggs online and having them shipped to me
Fertile eggs from my hens and roo, will be hand turning them. i marked their shells so I know if i turned. I had it running for about 5 or 6 hours and checked it every 30 mins thats how I know when it got stable. I checked it just now its 101.4
So it stayed at a constant 101f over night. I couldnt sleep n kept getting up to look. :D I noticed there were cold air pockets though. I have lined the walls with aluminum foil hopefully it reduces the pockets. Also what should temperature be when read on top of the egg shell area?
The traditional one on top of the eggs says 100 and the digital one to the side says 101. I have a digital child thermometer so I could try using that but im not sure what it should read from a direct egg.
Alright todays 2nd turning update:
So I saw that the digital thermometer was reading 107 (it might be because of how close it was to the light bulb oopsies) I took the child oral thermometer and placed it on the eggs to take a reading. It said 101.6 which coincides with the traditional thermometer which read 102. I decided to also take the temperature of the eggs furthest from the lightbulb (where the aluminum foil wall makes contact with them)
Those eggs read 101.0 and 101.2. :D I think the cold air pocket was solved. I think I am in the right temperature range right guys? When I took the temperatures i closed the lid as much as i could while my hand was in there to prevent too much heat escaping while reading it. I will be updating in a few more hours temperature readings from then. Also my mom kinda threw in 3 more eggs that were laid today by our hens. I told her fine but no more after that otherwise we will have to keep the incubator going on for longer than it should. I think chicken fever is at an all time high in the family. My lil sister was thinking of names to call them before they have even hatched. They have been tossing ideas as to the physical traits that the chicks might inherit. They have even been tossing around mental images of what they may look like. Dear lord help us.

As a precaution we have been asking around who will want chicks around 2 months from now (if they take 3 weeks ish to hatch and then 3 weeks to grow to a size and good feathering then....)

We already got some people that want the excesses. I know we can take in a considerable chunk of the hatch.
I would put the thermometer close to the bulb and farther away because the eggs are getting different temps
I've never hatched in a home made bator but I would try to cycle the eggs around when you turn them so they all get the heat
Also leave the thermometers in their with the lid closed . Every time you open the lid the less of a hatch rate your going to get.
I leave mine closed until I need to refill the water I don't even check my eggs anymore until 3 days before hatch to keep the lid
Closed as much as possible

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